Swings and Arrows

Monday I was filled with anxiety, but that was to be expected  as I returned to work after a 3  week leave of absence. In that span of time I was hospitalized, had a med change,attended outpatient, and tried to stay stress free. The only goal for the day was to wade through all my emails.

Tuesday I had an unexpected “run in” with my supervisor.  She did not follow through on something for me as she had said she would.  In fact she almost looked like a deer in headlights. She vaguely remembered our brief exchange around my request. I suggested I had emailed it to her the 1st day I was on leave.  She then said, no she must have “missed that.” Within a half hour she shot me a series of emails telling me she did not receive such email from me. She scoured the special email folder she has for me.  This began the email war.  She demanded I send the actual forwarded email to her. Well, I didn’t have it.

Wednesday morning she sent an email at 6:23am stating, thank goodness for text records.  It was through text I had requested assistance on a few items, not email. But, no mention of the billing.  Awesome idea…texts!  I also have text records. Which indicated among the texts she recalled, I also sent one regarding the billing and she said she would email the vendor and request it be sent to her for processing.  The war ended here. But I still felt thrown under the bus. She didn’t admit or even acknowledge she dropped the ball and I had to let the vendor know it wouldn’t be done.  All this drama may have sparked a touch of hypomania. I was so obnoxious and sarcastic and witty and just over the top silly the entire work day. So much so that I apologized to a few people.

Thursday I couldn’t get out of bed.  My body was so heavy. I lied to my supervisor and said my car wouldn’t start, I’d be late. I got there a little after 10. I had no energy.  I couldn’t get my brain to work.  I can’t understand what this unspoken tension is with my supervisor. I have been at my agency for 17 yrs, had countless supervisors and never any trouble.  I feel like I have a target on my back.

Today, Friday, our entire team is supposed to participate in a panel interview for a potential vendor. Its an immense and important project. I am the only one who has experience with this vendor. I have been excused in order to work on an emergency situation.  Confused is what I am.

Thing is, I’m a good worker. Probably try too hard. I know my stuff. In fact, know more and have done way more than her. I don’t care about that. I just think a little respect goes a long way.  I’m becoming paranoid because I have divulged my illness to her. What if she tries to use it against me? Is there an arrow pointed at me?

 

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Honesty-is it always the best policy?

I am feeling a bit lost right now. I have a full time  job which gives me structure and accountability.  Plus it can be a social environment which I am sorely lacking. Our office is moving and there has been delay after delay. Today marks two weeks working from home. I can’t get out of bed. I can’t produce. Yesterday I could barely function. I went to my local coffee shop for a change of scene but felt completely overwhelmed. Sitting outside I could hear the overhead radio, birds chirping, cars honked no and people chatting at such a high pace and volume I think I shut down. I stared down at my paperwork but could not process. Didn’t know where to start, how to start, or what to even look for.  I sat frozen for almost an hour.

Im still contending w symptoms of feeling detached. Disconnected. Separate. My dear boss, who has been amazingly supportive of me and my issues, has left the job.  She and I had a deal of sorts.  I could contact her in the morning before work and request to work from home if I was having an emotional day that didn’t lend itself to being in the office.  There were days I forced myself into the office w tear stained eyes and she would send me home to work.  I now have a new boss, who was actually my officemate. I never disclosed to her I am bipolar. Something held me back, don’t know why.  But now I feel like I need to be transparent w her too. I’m hoping we can strike the same deal. I am nervous.  For some reason I don’t feel as safe. I’m feeling terribly vulnerable.

For the bigger picture I believe it’s the right thing to do. I miss several days of work. Right now, she sees me as having a strong work ethic.  When I’m not there she doesn’t know I may be cowering in the corner of my room, or crying on the bathroom floor, or hearing voices telling me it’s time to go.  She thinks I’m at home churning out good work.  She respects me. To have her support is paramount to me continuing to produce good quality work when I can.  Knowing she understands sometimes I just can’t and it’s not because I don’t want to, will bring me a sense of relief.  But, of course I don’t know if that is how she will react or not.  The reality is she is not my old boss and she may have different views and standards and expectations.

I better stop now as I can feel myself flooded with anxiety as I write those words. It’s scary to put yourself out there in a professional environment.  Did you have to do it?? Do you have any helpful tips to share?